TMG Think Tank for Sustainability
Land Governance

Land-based ecosystems are fundamental pillars of our wellbeing. However, their resilience is increasingly threatened by the growing demand for food, housing, energy and other ecosystem services. Building on the Voluntary Guidelines on the Responsible Governance of Tenure of Land, Fisheries and Forests in the context of Food Security as an overarching framework, we work to promote the rights of all land users as an important precondition for sustainable and inclusive development.  

Our work involves analyzing structural barriers that hinder land users from enjoying their legitimate rights. Together with our partners, we explore context-specific solutions and innovations to overcome these barriers. This includes supporting governments in providing the necessary services to their citizens, and supporting right holders in claiming their legitimate rights. Building on the insights gained, we support the development of monitoring tools to increase transparency and accountability within the land sector, and to track the implementation of national and international commitments. Our approach can be described as multi-level changemaking to democratize food systems, end chronic poverty and food insecurity and restoring ecosystems.

We work simultaneously across the following three levels:

  • Local level: We create space and strengthen community-based organizations and sub-national governance institutions to co-develop social innovations for land tenure security.

  • National level: We work with governments, human rights institutions, and civil society networks to support the implementation of progressive national policies, also by building on progress made in global policy processes.

  • Global level: Through our broad research and policy networks we actively engage in identifying policy spaces and agenda setting to ensure that these ideas can be taken up and integrated into formal decision making and implementation. A core focus of our work is the integration of land tenure in the implementation of the three Rio Conventions.

Land, Gender and Human Rights

Land, Gender and Human Rights

Improving rights-based land governance with innovative tools

It is broadly acknowledged that the lack of land tenure security is a key barrier, not only to improved food security and sustainable land management practices at the farm level, but also for the restoration of ecosystems and resilience to climate change. While most countries have legal frameworks in place to recognize claims to land, both at individual and community level, enforcement remains weak. Despite their significant contribution to food security, and farm-based livelihoods, women are particularly disadvantaged due to the dominance of patriarchy and other unequal socio-cultural values in determining the ownership of land and other productive resources.

Multi-level changemaking: Our approach to strengthening responsible land governance

Multi-level changemaking: Our approach to strengthening responsible land governance

Bringing together diverse actors to strengthen policies and actions on responsible land governance

This body of work builds on TMG's flagship Global Soil Week programme, which aims to enable the protection of legitimate land tenure rights in the context of land degradation neutrality (LDN) measures and enabling smallholder farmers and local communities to contribute to the implementation of the UN Convention for Combating Desertification.[DB1] A key objective of the work is to mobilize partnerships to translate global policy frameworks and targets into feasible actions at the local level and leverage action research to improve global governance agendas.

Sustainable Land Management

Sustainable Land Management

Exploring social innovations at community level to foster sustainable land management practices

This thematic strand focuses on understanding the underlying socio-political dynamics and other structural challenges that smallholder farmers face in investing in sustainable land management practices. Based on locally-embedded research with our partners in several African countries, we develop, and pilot, "social innovations" to overcome structural obstacles. By sharing the insights gained with our broader networks of partners, as well as at various multilateral processes, we also seek to contribute to a systemic understanding of the enabling conditions for scaling up sustainable land management, at both the local and ecosystem levels.

BODENATLAS 2024 Daten und Fakten über eine lebenswichtige Ressource

Report

BODENATLAS 2024 Daten und Fakten über eine lebenswichtige Ressource

Der Bodenatlas präsentiert Daten und Fakten über die Bedeutung und den Zustand von Land, Böden und Ackerflächen. In zahlreichen Grafiken und Textbeiträgen gibt er einen aktuellen Einblick in den Zustand und die Gefährdung der Böden, von denen wir leben.

Written by Heinrich-Böll-Stiftung, Bund für Umwelt und Naturschutz Deutschland e. V. und TMG – Think Tank for Sustainability, TMG Research gGmbH.

Published on Jan 9, 2024

SOLUTIONS PATHWAYS: Empowering Communities for a Just Transition

Info Brief

SOLUTIONS PATHWAYS: Empowering Communities for a Just Transition

6 Pathways for Integrating Tenure Rights in Land Degradation Neutrality Programmes

Written by TMG Land Governance Team

Published on Dec 20, 2023

Programme: Regional Exchange Workshop on Mainstreaming Legitimate Tenure Rights in Land Restoration

Event Programme

Programme: Regional Exchange Workshop on Mainstreaming Legitimate Tenure Rights in Land Restoration

Shaping a future where land restoration and tenure rights go hand in hand for the well-being of our communities and the planet

Written by TMG Land Governance Team

Published on Nov 3, 2023

Safeguards for Carbon Markets – Prioritizing Local Communities’ Tenure Rights

Info Brief

Safeguards for Carbon Markets – Prioritizing Local Communities’ Tenure Rights

As carbon markets continue to gain traction, we need to look into the impact they will have on rural communities who currently rely on the lands where these projects will be implemented.

Written by Moritz Hauer, Washe Kazungu, Frederike Klümper

Published on Oct 12, 2023

The role of community forests in national LDN and land restoration programmes: A case study of community forest parcels in Taita Taveta County, Kenya

Report

The role of community forests in national LDN and land restoration programmes: A case study of community forest parcels in Taita Taveta County, Kenya

Examining the contribution of community forests to national Land Degradation Neutrality (LDN) and land restoration targets: a follow-up to the implementation of the UNCCD Decision 26/COP.14 on land tenure.

Written by Washe Kazungu, Frederike Klümper, Check Abdel Kader Baba

Published on Sep 19, 2023

Responsible land governance in LDN programmes: The risks of decoupling forest conservation from legitimate tenure rights in Madagascar

Report

Responsible land governance in LDN programmes: The risks of decoupling forest conservation from legitimate tenure rights in Madagascar

Examining the challenges to safeguard and integrate legitimate tenure rights in management and policy decisions: a follow-up to the implementation of the UNCCD Decision 26/COP.14 on land tenure.

Written by Check Abdel Kader, Baba, Frederike Klümper, Harifidy Rakoko Ratsimba, Washe Kazungu, Jes Weigelt

Published on Sep 19, 2023

15
January
2024
Unsere Grüne Woche: Bodenatlas 2024
07
November
2023
Inclusive governance of food systems transformation in Kenya
06
November
2023
Regional Exchange Workshop on Mainstreaming Legitimate Tenure Rights in Land Restoration
27
October
2023
Tenure security for all: the case for local and global action to advance implementation of the VGGT
12
October
2023
Safeguards for Carbon Markets - Prioritizing local communities’ tenure rights
07
September
2023
Land Rights and Gender Responsive Climate Action - Africa Climate Week Event

Learn more about our activities

Check out our different channels where we publish articles, videos, and analyses of global and local debates

TMG Think Tank for Sustainability consists of TMG Research gGmbH, an independent, non-partisan, non-for-profit organization registered in Berlin (District Court Charlottenburg, HRB 186018 B, USt.-ID: DE311653675) and TMG - Töpfer, Müller, Gaßner GmbH, a private company registered in Berlin (District Court Charlottenburg, HRB 177576 B USt.-ID: DE306832549).

Our main address is EUREF Campus 6-9, 10829 Berlin, Germany.

© 2024 TMG Think Tank for Sustainability. All Rights Reserved.